This spring the Brandywine River Museum of Art will present American Beauty: Highlights from the Richard M. Scaife Bequest, featuring the finest works from the bequest of Mr. Scaife—who left his impressive art collection to the Brandywine and the Westmoreland Museum of American Art following his death in 2014. Co-organized by the Brandywine and Westmoreland, American Beauty features 50 paintings — a top selection of 25 from each museum’s holdings — celebrating Scaife’s passion for the rich traditions of American art.
A long-time trustee of the Brandywine—as well as a newspaper publisher and philanthropist—Scaife was also a passionate collector of American art. He bequeathed his entire art collection to the Brandywine and Westmoreland, specifying that it be divided evenly between the museums with each taking turns to make their selection. This exhibition provides the first opportunity for the public to see the finest paintings from the Scaife collection. Together, these paintings present a fascinating glimpse of one man’s vision and an overview of the evolution of American art in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries.
Mr. Scaife believed in art’s power to enrich our existence and its ability to help us better understand the world and the issues facing us. Through his bequest, these works of art, once enjoyed privately in domestic settings, have become part of the public realm.
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